Australian honeymoon (and baby trip) destinations that will make you fall even harder for your significant other

A wedding and a baby. They are two of the biggest events in a person’s life, and two at that excellent excuses to travel. And not the ordinary kind of travel, but the luxurious, pampering, cost-free kind that you would otherwise never allow yourself to do.

Australia is full of honeymoon destinations to suit you, whether you’re into food and wine, rugged adventure, lazy beach days or a mix of all three. Straight from the pages of Flyer‘s new book, To travelHere are 10 of our favorite honeymoon (and babymoon) destinations across the country. Bookmark your next intimate escape.

Orpheus Island Lodge, Queensland

You’ll never share Orpheus Island with more than 27 other guests, meaning this luxurious retreat north of Townsville feels less like a lodge and more like a private paradise. Snorkel on illuminated reefs, picnic on secluded beaches and explore gardens with giant clams, or simply relax in the infinity pool or in your immaculately appointed beachfront suite. All food, drinks, and activities are included, making this the ultimate set-and-forget escape.

Pumphouse Point, TAS

Located on the edge of Australia’s deepest lake, Lake Saint Clair, Pumphouse Point is a majestic yet brooding hideaway. The main building is located on a small jetty, 250 meters from the lake. Each of the 12 rooms is spread over three floors and there are relaxing fireplace-equipped lounge areas and three self-service bars. Spend the days fishing, biking, rowing a boat, getting a massage or walking the endless trails around the hotel to spot wombats and platypus. In the evenings, mingle with other guests at lively communal dinners.

Gilberton Outback Retreat, QLD

Six hours west of Townsville, the all-inclusive Gilberton sits on a fully operational seventh-generation cattle station. There is no telephone, no television, no internet. Staying here instead means exploring ancient gold fields, driving the 36,000-acre 4-wheel drive station, and learning about local Yanga culture and history. Or you can just camp in the pavilion, soak in the huge bathtub overlooking the surrounding landscape, sip champagne, and enjoy farm-to-table dining. Because the real hook at Gilberton is that there are no other guests – it’s just you and your plus one – so you choose how you go about the experience. Mount Mulligan Lodge, another Queensland outback retreat, is a similar option worth considering.

Sal Salis, WA

An off-grid, luxurious, wild bush experience on one of Australia’s best beaches – this really is as isolated as you can get. Ningaloo Reef, near Exmouth, is Australia’s largest reef, where the outback meets the ocean. There are 15 luxury tents between the sand dunes, right on the water, which is warm and azure blue. Daily activities include snorkeling, kayaking, hiking and whale watching. Everything is included, with meals prepared by local chefs using locally sourced ingredients. Camp dinners are held at a long communal table lit by the unfiltered glare of the Milky Way.

Lord Howe Island, NSW

Located in the Tasman Sea, off the coast of Port Macquarie, Lord Howe Island is the first place in the country to see the sunrise every morning. At 7 miles long and two miles wide, this dramatic, beautiful and narrow landscape features looming Mount Gower surrounded by subtropical rainforests and aquamarine waters. Spend your days hiking, surfing and biking to the beach. There are luxury hotels and humble beach huts to stay in, surrounded by the banyan trees and Kentia palms of this pristine natural environment. Our pick of the bunch is Capella Lodge.

Station El Questro, WA

This working cattle station and luxury wilderness resort is located 50 miles west of Kununurra. It is the first or last stop on the 660-mile Gibb River Road and presents a generous example of the Kimberley in one compact package. Choose a luxurious riverside room, a tent cabin in the wilderness or a night under canvas. Bushwalks and swimming opportunities abound, but Emma Gorge is a highlight. The dramatic falls plunge from a 65-meter cliff into a deep plunge pool at the end of the 1.6-kilometer hike. The water is cool and refreshing, shaded by the towering cliffs for most of the day – not to mention the clear and fresh water you could drink.

Halcyon House, NSW

Halfway between the Gold Coast and Byron Bay, you’ll find this spectacularly designed ode to the surf motels of the 1960s. The chic blue-and-white interior is luxurious and brimming with personality, and each of the hotel’s 21 rooms has its own look and feel with vintage furnishings, upholstered walls, and king-sized beds. Settle into a striped daybed by the turquoise pool, where waiters decked out in blue and white take your cocktail order. Take one of the vintage bikes for a spin around town, then return for dinner at the on-site Paper Daisy restaurant, run by Chef Jason Barratt, formerly of Raes in Wategos and Attica.

Mornington Peninsula, VIC

The peninsula, where farmland meets the sea, is filled with an almost overwhelming number of wineries and restaurants. Drink at the region’s top wineries, including Port Phillip Estate, Panton Vineyard, and Polperro. Visit the sculpture park at Pt Leo, get sourdough in Flinders and eat fresh mussels on the pier (also in Flinders). Many wineries also offer romantic, luxury lodging (including Port Phillip and Polperro), but we can’t go past Graceburn House, the lovely abode on the same property as Tedesca Osteria, one of the Mornington Peninsula’s most sought-after dining experiences. Open for lunch and dinner, it is the ideal place for a long lunch or a slow, romantic dinner in low light. Afterwards, retreat to your stylish farmhouse for a cocktail in the bath.

The Argyle Inn, NSW

A few hours southwest of Sydney, in the single-strip town of Taralga, a 145-year-old inn has been stylishly converted into a modern Aussie bed and breakfast. The food is the real draw here. Open for dinner from Thursday to Saturday, the bistro is really something special. Bread is made in house, eggs come from hens on the inn’s nearby farm, and beer and wine are mostly from local producers. You barely have to leave the building for anything. For more space and privacy, the pub owns two other tenements in town: a restored old cottage and a beautiful light-filled chapel. This is the ultimate in country romance.

Raes in Wategos, NSW

Byron Bay is home to half a dozen hotels, but none are as legendary as this iconic, whitewashed villa on Wategos Beach, built in the 1960s or 1970s (the exact date is unclear) and later converted into a restaurant and private residence. Legend has it that Salvador Dalí, a friend of the original owner, designed the free-form tropical garden and swimming pool, which are still there today. After a superlative take, the hotel has come out more dreamy than ever, with rattan furniture, arched windows, seashell lighting and a powdery color palette courtesy of Sydney interior designer Tamsin Johnson. That remodel also elevated the hotel dining room to something worth traveling for. Chef Jason Saxby has worked in some of the world’s great kitchens, including Sydney’s Quay and London’s Ledbury, and the space itself is special – an indoor-outdoor terrace of sorts with a Mediterranean feel. Book in for a three-course long lunch or push the boat out with the full tasting menu.

to travel, published by Plum, costs $54.99. The book is available from all good bookshops and from shop.broadsheet.com.au.

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